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mizducky

eG Foodblog: mizducky - The Tightwad Gourmand turns pro

198 posts in this topic

Do my eyes deceive me, or is that eight kinds of feta for sale in the photo above?

Sometimes I hate living in Asia.

The white jelly-like thing you had for lunch was probably some sort of muk. The brown kind of muk is made from acorns, I believe. It's really nice with a bit of sesame oil and chili flakes sprinkled over.

Will there be any Vietnamese food stops in this blog? I'd love to see what your bun bo hue looks like!

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The white jelly-like thing you had for lunch was probably some sort of muk. The brown kind of muk is made from acorns, I believe. It's really nice with a bit of sesame oil and chili flakes sprinkled over.

That's what I was thinking. It's sold in our Asian grocery stores with the label "mung bean jelly." Very low in calories, but not a lot of flavor until you spice it up with chili paste or other condiments.

Excellent start to the blog, mizducky, and I want to add my congratulations to those piling up so far on your tremendous weight loss. Such courage you must have! Bravo!

Did you get anything from the pastry case? Or are you not terribly tempted by sweets?

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Back from my meeting, and busy inhaling a hastily-prepared dinner--which I will show you shortly, along with the other photos I need to go process. But first:

I think our church (also UU) sells the same coffee. Isn't it yummy?

Yes, it really is. I seriously need to hit the Service Committee folks up for some more. Nothing like having an addictive fundraising item! :laugh:

Yes, I know that some outfit did bring out an energy drink named Whoop-ass ... but it's all whoop-ass to moi.

Jones Soda from right here in little ole Seattle! also known for their Thanksgiving dinner flavored sodas :wacko:

That's right! Now it all comes back to me ... I was working for Microsoft when Jones was debuting that stuff, and they brought their big promo RV on campus to do some kind of marketing event. Lots of Softies got cans of the stuff to keep around their offices as souvenirs, but I think there was rather more humorous brandishing of the cans than actual drinking of their contents. :laugh:

Do my eyes deceive me, or is that eight kinds of feta for sale in the photo above?

Sometimes I hate living in Asia.

The white jelly-like thing you had for lunch was probably some sort of muk. The brown kind of muk is made from acorns, I believe. It's really nice with a bit of sesame oil and chili flakes sprinkled over.

Will there be any Vietnamese food stops in this blog? I'd love to see what your bun bo hue looks like!

Yep, that is a whole lotta feta in that shot. And I couldn't even get the whole deli case into the photo--not only is there more feta, but there is also a bunch of different types of olives. But to cheer you up, yes, I can fit a bowl of bun bo hue in some time this week--and I know just the one to show you. :wink:

And thanks for identifying muk for me--now that I know what it's called, I have discovered that Wikipedia does have an entry for it.

Okay--off to do dances with photos. Back soon ...

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I don't remember why the "duck" in your name, but perhaps you'll have to change it to a swan, after all that weight loss. Congratulations!


Ruth Dondanville aka "ruthcooks"

“Are you making a statement, or are you making dinner?” Mario Batali

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So here is my haul from today's shopping:

gallery_28660_4357_161311.jpg

Cunningly displayed against the backdrop of my roommate's George Foreman Grill, we have here from 99 Ranch: bean curd sticks; seasoned nori strips (meant for garnishes on salads and soups, but I just snack on 'em instead of more fattening chips); fermented bean curd in chile oil; toban jian (chile-bean sauce); king oyster a.k.a. eryngii mushrooms (very meaty, terrific in stews); baby bok choy; little shrimp (in shell, heads off); a fish head (think it was from a carp--destined for soup). From Windmill Farms: fish oil capsules (for heart and joint health); powdered psyillium (for fiber and regularity--weight loss and blood pressure meds tend to make my bod do wacky things with water retention, which in turn tends to mess with, erm, other things, so my doc suggested I add a benign bulk fiber laxative to my routine).

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From North Park Produce: Mediterranean dark roast coffee; a little honey bear (hey, it was on sale for 99 cents!); celery; eggplant; blood oranges (moros, 99 cents/pound--couldn't resist); Laughing Cow Light cheese (the only low fat cheese I have yet encountered that actually tastes great) one each onion and garlic flavors; whole wheat pita (my standard sandwich-making bread--low fat, low calorie, high fiber, versatile, and nice-tasting). The bags of snack foods and the big honkin' jars of protein powder are the property of my roommate. :biggrin:

As long as we've started the grand tour of the kitchen, let me show you its full ghetto fabulousness: :rolleyes:

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Hey, at least the floor isn't quite as grungy as when I last showed it to you! :blush:

And the squalor continues over here:

gallery_28660_4357_21705.jpg

Not quite enough room in the pantry, so I created this funky little annex.

Meanwhile, a bunch of my favorite ingredients live up here:

gallery_28660_4357_331812.jpg

And then there is the vortex of chaos known as the fridge:

gallery_28660_4357_345414.jpg

gallery_28660_4357_369161.jpg

gallery_28660_4357_436501.jpg

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Somewhere, Martha Stewart is cringing in horror. :laugh:

Anyway, so my meeting ran a little longer than I expected, and when I arrived home I was famished. So I quickly blanched and shocked the shrimp, peeled a quarter-pound's worth (yes, I measured), softened some bean thread noodles in some home-made turkey broth I had in the fridge, added some baby bok choy and the shrimp, and voila--soup!

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Simple, fast, filling, and satisfying. The apple is for a little later. The glass is full of diet lemonade (Kroger's store-brand knock-off of Crystal Light). I drink a ton of that stuff. Keeping well hydrated is crucial while losing weight, especially in a dry climate like Southern California. But I hate drinking water--it's just so ... boring. So one of my few concessions to diet industry products is diet soft drinks like this. I'm not totally thrilled with taking in that much artificial sweetener, but I'm even less thrilled with what happens to me when I get dehydrated.

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Did you get anything from the pastry case? Or are you not terribly tempted by sweets?

I am extremely fortunate that I'm not really a sweets person. It was meat and fat that were my traditional downfalls--greasy burgers and fries, huge deli sandwiches, loaded pizzas, barbeque, that kind of thing. Not that I wouldn't inhale a boxful of Girl Scout cookies if left in my immediate vicinity, but given the choice between that and a whole Hebrew National salami, I'd choose the meat every time. No wonder I came down with gout! Ironically, an acute gout attack is marvelous negative reinforcement against overdoing it with the animal protein; I'm often tempted, but I just reflect on what it felt like to have my big toe totally immobilize me and the temptation passes.

I don't remember why the "duck" in your name, but perhaps you'll have to change it to a swan, after all that weight loss.  Congratulations!

Thank you! (And thanks to everyone who has offered their congratulations!)

"Ducky" is an old nickname hung on my by my brother, who is two years younger than me. When we were both in college, only several states apart from each other, he would write me these letters that were so hysterically funny that they demanded to be read out loud to my friends. One letter my brother chose to open with the salutation "Dearest Ducky"--just because he liked the alliteration. My friends just about fell on the floor, and started calling me Ducky, greeting me with quacking noises. I actually was delighted--it was the first nickname anyone had ever hung on me that I actually liked--and began to encourage them. And the rest was history. :smile:

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On tap for tomorrow (God/ess willing and my knees don't crap out): I plan to take you along to a whole 'nother side of the San Diego experience; maybe fit in that bowl of bun bo Hue along the way; and since I have no other commitments tomorrow evening, maybe I'll do some kind of cooking experiment with that fish head.

Speaking of which: Right now I'm thinking of making soup, using a sinigiang soup packet I'd bought previously and that eggplant I bought today (thanks again, Doddie, for reassuring me that those packets are the real deal). But I'll be happy to entertain other suggestions--if I don't use 'em with this head, I'll certainly use 'em in future, because this whole business of cooking with fish heads is another recent fascination of mine. Pertinent info: the head weighed about two pounds before cleaning; the fishmonger did clean it, removing the gills and chopping it into about eight pieces or so; and like I said, my best guess is that it was a carp head (the species was not specified in the store, but my admittedly brief experience is that the big ones they sell for cheap tend to be carp).

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Mizducky, you got (cleaned) fish heads, eggplant, bok choy and sinigang packet???? You're all set. Just boil a tomato and an onion in a small pot of water. When everything is boiling, add the fish heads and the sinigang packet. Give it 2-3 minutes of cooking (or until you see that the fish is done), then add the cut up veggies (bok choy and slices of eggplant). When the eggplant is done, the sinigang is too! Dip fish meat in fish sauce and sip the broth. Aaaah, sinigang heaven!

PS. To add tomatoey goodness, mash the tomato in the soup before serving. Tummy growling now for some sinigang!


Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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Congrats on your weight loss, Ellen!

Where is Golden Hill in San Diego? This restaurant looks lovely!


W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"

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Oops--forgot to take the Obligatory Pocky Shot! But I did get this shot of 99's bakery case:

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That looks good. But I think the "Kee Wah" in Monterey Park (and San Gabriel, and Milpitas) - if you have ever tried it, is even better. (And so are a few in San Francisco China Town.) I hope Kee Wah will open shop in San Diego some day (and I might consider moving back to SD!!! :wink: ).


Edited by hzrt8w (log)

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"

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Somewhere, Martha Stewart is cringing in horror. :laugh:

Your "appeal rating" ranks much much higher, at least in my book, than Martha's does, mizducky. :wink:

Congrats on the new regime. :smile:

That soup looked astonishingly rich-tasting.

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Checking in late for my flight to disgustingly sunny San Diego!

And let me add my Huzzahs and Congratulations on your successful shedding of 114 pounds one at a time. Spinning my wheels as I am in the neighborhood of 205, I can only salute you. (I'm probably engaged in self-sabotage. However, I did take one piece of advice you gave me a while back: I keep cases of Laughing Cow Light cheese in my desk drawer for snacking, along with tins of sardines; this--I hope!--helps cut down on the urge to overindulge at the campus dining hall, which I manage to do on my weekly visits.)

Keep up the good work, Ducks!

Now, on to your travels so far:

I'll be showing you my purchases in a soon-to-follow post, but meanwhile on to the next stop: Windmill Farms, a local independent health-food supermarket:

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Looks like a former Safeway, vintage mid-'60s. Am I in the ballpark?

So here is my haul from today's shopping:

[...]

gallery_28660_4357_348511.jpg

From North Park Produce: Mediterranean dark roast coffee; a little honey bear (hey, it was on sale for 99 cents!); celery; eggplant; blood oranges (moros, 99 cents/pound--couldn't resist); Laughing Cow Light cheese (the only low fat cheese I have yet encountered that actually tastes great) one each onion and garlic flavors; whole wheat pita (my standard sandwich-making bread--low fat, low calorie, high fiber, versatile, and nice-tasting). The bags of snack foods and the big honkin' jars of protein powder are the property of my roommate. :biggrin:

Actually, while we're on the subject of light cheese, you might want to see if you can find Cabot 50% Light Cheddar out your way. It actually has a distinct Cheddar sharpness and decent mouthfeel, though you can tell the difference between it and their full-fat product. Still, I've tried it, and it's not too shabby at all. (I don't know whether Tillamook makes a similar product. As I consider Cabot and Tillamook roughly equal in quality, with Tillamook having the edge on flavor, if you do happen to find something that calls itself "Tillamook Light Cheddar," try it. I know I haven't seen such a creature over on this coast.)

As long as we've started the grand tour of the kitchen, let me show you its full ghetto fabulousness: :rolleyes:

gallery_28660_4357_282789.jpg

Hey, at least the floor isn't quite as grungy as when I last showed it to you! :blush:

And the squalor continues over here:

gallery_28660_4357_21705.jpg

Not quite enough room in the pantry, so I created this funky little annex.

Meanwhile, a bunch of my favorite ingredients live up here:

gallery_28660_4357_331812.jpg

And then there is the vortex of chaos known as the fridge:

gallery_28660_4357_345414.jpg

gallery_28660_4357_369161.jpg

gallery_28660_4357_436501.jpg

gallery_28660_4357_74351.jpg

Somewhere, Martha Stewart is cringing in horror. :laugh:

No wonder you said you were thinking of me as you posted your fridge shots! Your fridge could easily pass for my own. So could your kitchen, with some minor alterations (a real tile floor and varnished hardwood door and drawer faces).

Do you keep a messy desk too?

Switching gears only slightly: I found out on Saturday that a fellow PGMCer in the baritone section is one of those cultural rarities: He's Vietnamese-American, and he loves cheese.* He got this from his father, who, he told me, routinely ordered pizza with extra cheese, took out chopsticks, ate the cheese off the pizza, and discarded the rest of the pie.

Usually, Asian cuisines and dairy foods don't mix. Do you find your love of both in any way unusual?

*I have made it a mission to have this fellow and Vince (see second foodblog) over soon for a cheese orgy.


Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

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Good morning, world!

Just having coffee at my computer right now, as I plan to have a late breakfast/brunch/blunch thing as soon as I get out of the house. But first, catching up with some queries:

Congrats on your weight loss, Ellen!

Where is Golden Hill in San Diego? This restaurant looks lovely!

Thank you, Ah Leung! Golden Hill is the neighborhood that wraps around the south border of Balboa Park; it merges into the equally wonderful neighborhood of South Park, which lies along the southern end of the park's eastern border. Both Golden Hill and South Park have lots of gracious older homes (old by West Coast urban area standards, I mean--lots of wood-frame Craftsman era homes), lots of trees, broad streets, and little funky shops. Lots of artists, musicians, writers, and other assorted creative-bohemian types live there. I'm hoping to work a more extensive visit to the area into the blog later in the week.

I'll be showing you my purchases in a soon-to-follow post, but meanwhile on to the next stop: Windmill Farms, a local independent health-food supermarket:

gallery_28660_4357_281647.jpg

Looks like a former Safeway, vintage mid-'60s. Am I in the ballpark?

It does look like a repurposed building, doesn't it? A preliminary poking about the web turns up that the previous market in this space was another indie known as Stump's (after the owner's last name); was unable to find out who owned the building before them. Windmill Farms' website, while very nice, is not particularly informative on the matter.

Actually, while we're on the subject of light cheese, you might want to see if you can find Cabot 50% Light Cheddar out your way.  It actually has a distinct Cheddar sharpness and decent mouthfeel, though you can tell the difference between it and their full-fat product.  Still, I've tried it, and it's not too shabby at all.  (I don't know whether Tillamook makes a similar product.  As I consider Cabot and Tillamook roughly equal in quality, with Tillamook having the edge on flavor, if you do happen to find something that calls itself "Tillamook Light Cheddar," try it.  I know I haven't seen such a creature over on this coast.)

Thanks for the tip--I'm pretty sure I've seen the Cabot light cheeses in some store or other; now I'll make a point of it to seek them out.

No wonder you said you were thinking of me as you posted your fridge shots!  Your fridge could easily pass for my own.  So could your kitchen, with some minor alterations (a real tile floor and varnished hardwood door and drawer faces).

Do you keep a messy desk too?

I try my damnedest not to, but succeed only by dint of finding drawers, boxes, and trays into which to shove the mess so I don't have to look at it. :laugh:

Usually, Asian cuisines and dairy foods don't mix.  Do you find your love of both in any way unusual?

Nah, I'm a total Euro-American product there--in fact, cheese used to be my second-worst temptation right behind greasy meaty stuff. However, I do confess to sometimes still being a little startled by modern Asian dishes that incorporate dairy in non-traditional ways--for instance, cream cheese in sushi rolls. But whereas someone who grew up in an Asian culture might react with "Hey--that's an alien ingredient in my people's dish!" my reaction might be more like "Hey--that's that's one of my people's ingredients in another people's dish!" Then again, I'm certain there are plenty of Asians who are understandably perplexed by Americans' tendency to, say, splash soy sauce randomly over all sorts of non-Asian ingredients and proclaim the resulting dish to be "Asian" or even "fusion." Cross-cultural culinary borrowing can be fun! :laugh:

Ironically, though, I and my generation of offspring of Eastern European Jews have our own break-with-the-past relationship to cheese and other dairy. My ancestors, keeping kosher, would have held combinations of meat and dairy to be religiously unfit for consumption. Even though my grandparents largely abandoned the religion when they came to the Goldene Medina ("Golden Land" a.k.a. America), they probably still thought of cheeseburgers, and even reubens, as just kind of ... weird and alien. My parents, however, had no such compunctions--hell, they're the ones from whom I learned to hoover up every available bit of food in sight. :laugh:

(edited to fix as many tyops as I coud find... :biggrin: )


Edited by mizducky (log)

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Thank you, Ah Leung! Golden Hill is the neighborhood that wraps around the south border of Balboa Park; it merges into the equally wonderful neighborhood of South Park, which lies along the southern end of the park's eastern border. Both Golden Hill and South Park have lots of gracious older homes (old by West Coast urban area standards, I mean--lots of wood-frame Craftsman era homes), lots of trees, broad streets, and little funky shops. Lots of artists, musicians, writers, and other assorted creative-bohemian types live there. I'm hoping to work a more extensive visit to the area into the blog later in the week.

Oh yeah! Balboa Park... near downtown SD. Of couse! I remember that area well. Very nice! I have never learned of the name Golden Hill of the 4 years I lived in SD. :sad: I loved the wonderful dessert and coffee at that what-daya-callit place in the area... I am sure you would refresh me of the name. :raz: 5th and around Upas? Something like that?


W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"

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Usually, Asian cuisines and dairy foods don't mix.  Do you find your love of both in any way unusual?

Nah, I'm a total Euro-American product there--in fact, cheese used to be my second-worst temptation right behind greasy meaty stuff. However, I do confess to sometimes still being a little startled by modern Asian dishes that incorporate dairy in non-traditional ways--for instance, cream cheese in sushi rolls.

Philly rolls! (Named, of course, for the cream cheese, not because they originated in Philadelphia. In that sense, they are worthy descendants of the cream cheese itself.)

Then again, I'm certain there are plenty of Asians who are understandably perplexed by Americans' tendency to, say, splash soy sauce randomly over all sorts of non-Asian ingredients and proclaim the resulting dish to be "Asian" or even "fusion." Cross-cultural culinary borrowing can be fun! :laugh:

I have this recollection of reading somewhere an item that basically boiled down a bunch of ethnic and national cuisines to one or two key ingredients. Cilantro? Mexican. Ginger? East Asian. Curry? Indian. And so on. The article was a sort of culinary equivalent of the hip-hop music practice of "sampling." In this fashion, one could theoretically replicate the entire United Nations in a single dish, which would in all likelihood be nearly inedible.

Ironically, though, I and my generation of offspring of Eastern European Jews have our own break-with-the-past relationship to cheese and other dairy. My ancestors, keeping kosher, would have held combinations of meat and dairy to be religiously unfit for consumption. Even though my grandparents largely abandoned the religion when they came to the Goldene Medina ("Golden Land" a.k.a. America), they probably still thought of cheeseburgers, and even reubens, as just kind of ... weird and alien. My parents, however, had no such compunctions--hell, they're the ones from whom I learned to hoover up every available bit of food in sight. :laugh:

(edited to fix as many tyops as I coud find... :biggrin: )

So had you retained your religious as well as ethnic ties, you would no doubt be a Reconstructionist Jew.

Say what you will about Christianity, it lets you off the hook for a multitude of sins. :wink: (There's a passage in, I believe, Acts where the Apostle Paul is presented with a vision in which all sorts of unclean foods are laid before him in a sort of huge buffet, and the voice of the Lord commands him to eat. He protests that the law forbids this, but the Lord replies that through the sacrifice of Christ, we are released from having to observe these petty rules. I could comment further on this, but that would be venturing way OT. :wink: )


Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

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mizducky, that weight loss is sure something to be proud of. I am looking forward on how you are able to incorporate great taste in your food, which would be hard for me on a site like this. Now I must go read the first blogs..blog on.

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"You know I'm going to be twenty-five? ... That's a quarter of a century. Makes a girl think." -- Marilyn Monroe in "Some Like It Hot" (one of my all-time favorite movies in the universe)

Those of you who are movie buffs may already know that the "Florida" hotel where much of the action in "Some Like It Hot" takes place was actually played by a beloved San Diego area institution, the Hotel Del Coronado. We'll be getting to "the Del" shortly, but first we gotta coffee up:

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I bought this wacky little gadget in a local Korean grocery, after looking about in vain for one of those old-school Melitta plastic cones you would set on top of a mug to make a single serving of coffee. It's kind of a pain in the butt to use, as you have to stand there with the kettle pouring in boiled water bit by bit, but it makes surprisingly good coffee. That Mediterranean dark roast I bought yesterday, by the way, is quite tasty, although the staff person who helped me probably ground it a little finer than I needed it.

Next order of business was grabbing brunch/blunch/whatever--I wuz getting pretty hungry, and I knew this place would take good care of me:

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Mien Trung is a tiny little Vietnamese place located in Linda Vista, a neighborhood just south of Kearny Mesa with a large Vietnamese enclave. Mien Trung has an unusually short menu for a Vietnamese restaurant, that doesn't even bother with pho -- but they make what I and various foodie friends have decided is probably the best bowl of bun bo Hue in San Diego:

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This is the #2 Bun Bo Hue dac biet (all sorts of diacritical marks missing)--it's the delux extra-large version, and in addition to the traditional slice of pork hock, slices of well-done brisket, chunks of beef tendon and cubes of pork blood, it contains a couple of slices of gio lua, that mortadella-like Vietnames steamed sausage. The broth is fiery hot and delicious, the bun noodles maybe a little overly soft but quite soothing, and the side-dish of veggie/herbal add-ins generous and varied. They have a bunch of other intriguing things on the menu, but I'm so enamored of their bun bo Hue I've yet to bring myself to order something else from them.

Suitably fortified. I head for the Coronado Bridge. This is a long tall graceful arch of concrete that rises waaaaaaay high over San Diego Harbor (the better to let huge freighters and military seacraft pass under it) to connect the mainland with the northern end of Coronado Island. With my fear of heights, driving this bridge is an adventure! So the only photo I have of it for today is this shot taken once I was well-settled on terra firma on the other side:

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The City of Coronado is entirely separate politically from the City of San Diego--and in many other ways it might as well be on a whole other planet. It's not just that they've got money. They've also got a whole more mellow scene going on:

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A shot down the peaceful end of the main drag, Orange Avenue.

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Spreckels Park, named after the wealthy shipping magnate whose early investments in the sleepy 19th century village of San Diego were fundamental in booting it towards big-city-hood. (More about John D. Spreckels here.) This little park is near and dear to my heart for the annual summer concert series held here, to which seemingly the whole town comes, bringing their picnic coolers and blankets along. My buddies in Rockola have been regulars in this concert series for years.

And there are also food-oriented reasons I've dragged you all out here, one of which is: a farmer's market!

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This weekly market takes place in the parking lot of "The Landing," which is one of those touristy shopping/dining complexes that developers persist in selling to cities as a great business deal. Eh--not my cup of frou frou. But their parking lot does make a nice place to sell produce:

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The strawberries looked especially gorgeous, but I was afraid they'd get all bunged up by the time I finished gallivanting around and headed home. But I couldn't resist buying a bunch of lovely-looking beets for a buck.

To be continued ...

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Okay, on to The Del:

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They've been adding on to this hotel for years and years, but the heart of it remains this grand Victorian wedding cake of white-painted wood clapboard and red cupolas.

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Marilyn and the cast of "Some Like It Hot" are far from the only notables to have crossed its threshold. Another interesting chunk of its history, not 100% confirmed but oft-repeated, is that this is where Edward VII first met a Coronado divorcee by the name of Wallis Simpson. It is at least certain that HRH did stay at the hotel, at any rate.

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And like any grand hotel, the Del has a number of dining venues both casual and formal--everything from the popular Moo Time Creamery ice cream parlor, to its brand-new signature restaurant 1500 Ocean (the entrance to which, I believe, is somewhere down along this terrace).

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Alas, the grand ballroom was closed for a private function, so I couldn't get you a shot of the astonishing woodwork in its arched cathedral ceilings. And I was avoiding using flash lest security pitch me out. But I hope you can get some impression of the Victorian extravaganza of woodwork going on in this interior. It's really breathtaking in real life.

Heh, and the reason I know the interior of this hotel so well is that, like just about every other hotel in town, Rockola has played private gigs in here; in fact, one of the very first of their gigs on which I went along as administrative support was a big formal dinner in that main ballroom. Insider tip: if you're not an actual guest at the hotel, don't park in the hotel's lot if you can possibly manage to find street parking--they charge a mint!!!

So, after all that running around in that rich atmosphere, I was beginning to feel a bit peckish again, so I headed back to the other end of Orange Ave. and this establishment:

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Coronado Brewing Company is a microbrewery pub with quite a following among the locals. It's also yet another Rockola connection--they've played a number of gigs here over the years. It's been a few years since I've eaten here, and it occured to me that it might be a likely place to write a recommendation about, so I wanted to revisit with my new food-writer hat on.

I had arrived in time for their happy hour pricing, so I decided on a pint of their Nutter Brown Ale, and an order of what they redundantly called their "Asian Spring Rolls". First came the beer:

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Okay, I'm far from the most experienced beer person in the world, but I kinda thought the head on a freshly pulled pint would be a little taller than that. But I have no complaints about the flavor--really bright and fruity, with a little bitter bite underneath, very pleasant to drink. On to the spring rolls:

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They look pretty, and the serving is generous. And I liked the veggie filling--in addition to carrot and red pepper slivers, there was a generous amount of shiitake mushroom, plus green beans, which I found delightfully different. But the wrappers were way too thick, and thus kind of heavy and doughy. And they got a little heavy-handed with the ginger in both the filling and in the dressing on the greens underneath, so by the time I finished, the ginger flavor had blotted out everything else. Oh well. I should know better than to order the one Asian item on the menu of a non-Asian place, but I really wanted something light. Next time I'll try one of the salads ... and if that doesn't pan out, I guess I'll either not be writing this place up afterall, or maybe referring it to our writer who covers booze--because I do think their beers merit further exploration.

It was getting on towards 4:30pm, so I scurried back across the bridge before rush hour got too crazy, and came home to be greeted by this li'l guy:

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Actually, Randall ain't so little--he's a big chunky hunk o' kitty who really likes his chow. Speaking of which, he gave his daddy--my roommate--a bit of a scare when Roomie suddenly realized he'd been feeding Randall one of the recently recalled brands of cat food for several weeks. But Randall seemed to have no symptoms after all that time, and in fact a check of the serial numbers on the caseful of food proved that it wasn't one of the suspect lots, so apparently all is well in kittyland for the time being.

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but first we gotta coffee up:

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I bought this wacky little gadget in a local Korean grocery, after looking about in vain for one of those old-school Melitta plastic cones you would set on top of a mug to make a single serving of coffee. It's kind of a pain in the butt to use, as you have to stand there with the kettle pouring in boiled water bit by bit, but it makes surprisingly good coffee. That Mediterranean dark roast I bought yesterday, by the way, is quite tasty, although the staff person who helped me probably ground it a little finer than I needed it.

MizDucky! We have the same korean pot! Lookee here from my blog:

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Great minds brew/sip alike. :biggrin:


Doddie aka Domestic Goddess

"Nobody loves pork more than a Filipino"

eGFoodblog: Adobo and Fried Chicken in Korea

The dark side... my own blog: A Box of Jalapenos

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[...]I have this recollection of reading somewhere an item that basically boiled down a bunch of ethnic and national cuisines to one or two key ingredients.  Cilantro?  Mexican.  Ginger?  East Asian.  Curry?  Indian.  And so on.  The article was a sort of culinary equivalent of the hip-hop music practice of "sampling."  In this fashion, one could theoretically replicate the entire United Nations in a single dish, which would in all likelihood be nearly inedible.[...]

Not to hijack this great blog, but there are some problems. First of all, cilantro is used a great deal in certain kinds of Indian food, as well as in Cantonese food, etc., etc. Ginger is used in South and Southeast as well as East Asian food. And "curry" is not an ingredient in Indian food, but rather, essentially a catchall term to describe various kinds of dishes -- many of which we'd think of as similar to stews -- using a masala (blend of spices, but one which isn't normally bought already blended in a store).

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